and ramblings on everything in between
When I decided to sponsor a child in El Salvador, I was excited to share God’s love with her while building a friendship that would hopefully last for years. I looked forward to sending her encouraging letters and giving her a present on her birthday. I was anxious to watch her grow up and thrive with the help of the Compassion International program despite the challenges that stood in her way.
What I didn’t anticipate was the massive amounts of perspective it would give me. Tell a kid in poverty about your life and you gain some humility.
Oh, the life I often complain about? The life I often want to change? The life that is filled with a fun job, a nice paycheck, a supportive family, infinite opportunities, and extraordinary amounts of abundance? That life? It’s okay.
It’s convicting and eye-opening and disappointing to realize how I sometimes view my life when I imagine how it looks through her eyes.
I’m saddened by how quickly I can change from reading about the nightmare that happened in Ohio last month or the horrific way prisoners are treated to thinking about what I’ll eat next or what I want to accomplish over the weekend. (Or the fact that I know how scary the conditions are surrounding my sponsor child, yet I’m twisting her story to focus on me.) It’s too easy – and too comforting – to keep our eyes focused on us if we’re not careful or intentional.
What humbled me even more was the fact that this amazing, sweet, perfect little girl asked how she can be praying for me in her last letter. Do you have any prayer requests? she asked. And it melted my heart.
Because despite her situation, she knows God listens. Despite the thousands of miles between us, she is thinking of me and my family. And despite the fact that our worlds look very, very different, we can still be there for one another. That amazes me beyond belief and encourages me to keep everything in the right perspective.